Breastfeeding in public, what to do?(47 Posts)
So I had my little boy just over 4 weeks ago and I've been breastfeeding constantly on demand.
I'm starting to go a little stir mad though as I'm scared to leave the house invade he gets hungry and I'm really not confident in feeding him in public..
Another problem, I have to get on a 45minute bus ride tomorrow to get him registered, so I know either when we get there or on the way back he's going to get hungry..
Obviously I'm not going to let him starve but I really don't know what to do..
can I mix feed? And take 1 bottle of formula and give him that if he gets hungry? All my friends bottle feed and I'm the only one breastfeeding, being 20 they're not overly keen on it but I wanted to give it ago and I still seem to be going strong other than th fact of going out in public
What do all you breastfeeding Mamas do?
Any advice/support would be highly appreciated
When I (and DS) were still getting used to bf I used to tuck a muslin in my bra strap before undoing my top/bra and that would cover me enough to give me confidence.
I think it might be too early to start mixed feeding without affecting your supply
Can you express?
If not a bottle of formula won't hurt. Your supply won't dry up after skipping one feed.
You can take a bottle of formula with you but honestly, try bfing in public. Find a quiet corner in a cafe or somewhere and give it a go. It's pretty easy once you get the hang of it and I've never felt exposed or had any negative reactions to it 18mo in.
Just feed on the bus! Don't make a big deal of it, wear a vest top underneath & just feed him.
I'll bet there is somewhere private you can feed at the registry office (call in advance to ask). Even if you borrow an office. Long term I think you need to practice feeding in public to up your confidence (start in front of mirror, then find someone supportive to go to a quiet cafe/park bench with and try it out). Good luck.
It's tricky but the more you do it the more confident you will become.
I practised getting boob out and latching baby discreetly at home. It soon got easier.
My tips would be to find a space where you are near a wall so you can turn into the wall to latch before turning back into the room. Just made me feel more confident about not flashing boob to the entire room! Wear layered tops so you can get boob out but kept under one layer then all you need to do is lift up the one layer and rest if boob is tucked away.
Try a feeding cover to begin with. It helped me in those first few weeks and I soon abandoned it once igor the hang of it.
Just go for it! Don't feel like you have to give a bottle, no one will care and if they do that's there problem!!
I've been told about tucking something in, but my boy isn't overly keen on his head/face being covered up. He starts squirming and kicking and all sorts haha!
& I do have a manual pump but I'm never too sure as to when would be the best time to do it, I already have an over supply so I don't want to increase it anymore than it already is? I don't know how many ounces to do either?
some large shops have searts in their nappy changing areas for breast feeding mothers.
Alternatively, just go,to a quiet cafe and perch yourself in a corner.. It's quite easy to do it discreetly, and the majority of people won't even notice.
It will make life easier if you just decide to breast feed in public. I breast fed 3 kids for a total of 7 years, and travelled a lot, feeding in every possible situation and in lots of different countries. There was only one time that someone made a comment in (on an airplane), and I genuinely never felt uncomfortable because most of the time no one even noticed I was feeding. Truly, having clean, healthy food, at the perfect temperature, always on tap, with no fuss and no paraphernalia is one of the best things about breastfeeding. You are so free to go everywhere and do everything!
If you have an oversupply I would just express a small amount before or after feeding your little one for the rest of the day today and tonight until you have enough for a feed. Rather than doing a big session which will tell you body to replace all the milk taken.
I would take two bottles of 4oz with me for my little one at that age. You should only need one but if she only takes a little then half an hour later wants more you will have a second bottle to use.
Covers are conspicuous and make more of a fuss, I think. I carried my babies in a pouch on my front, and just pulled up my loose shirt so they could feed. No one even noticed most of the time.
I feed him confidently infront of friends and family I'm not sure as to why I'm so scared now.
I feel if it was my own town centre, I know most people in the shops and would probably feel abit more better there, but I'm going into the city to get him registered, so there's a lot more people..
I do love breastfeeding even though I feel like I do it 24/7 I just don't want to give up either
Also, I was really nervous about feeding in public but it doesn't bother me at all now. It won't help you for tomorrow but could you see if your local Sure Start centre has a breastfeeding support group? You can go along and have a chat with others, feed while you are there to get some practice and build your confidence.
With practice feeding in public does get easier. I go for a vest top under a long top. I really think the vast majority of people won't notice. I honestly think if you sit on the bus by the window no one will be able to even see your feeding.
Good luck OP.
Just head out straight after a feed and you'll get there ok. Plan one feed in town in a place you know (Starbucks or a shop) and then jump on the bus back, it's a bit scary first time but you'll be fine.
I felt a bit like you with my first as she would wriggle like mad trying to latch on. I ended up mix feeding and using those ready cartons when out and about for ease. It did get better with practice though and with DD2 I could and did feed everywhere and anywhere without any boob flashing at all!
The tip about layers is the key. A stretchy vest bottom layer that pulls down and and loose shirt/top to pull up is the easiest combination. Also wear prints rather than a plain top layer so any dribbles don't show. Sit in a seat facing away from the room and it's fine, honest. Well done for giving it a go.
Have you tried a breastfeeding top? Jo Jo Maman Bebe do some nice ones. I found that i could feed discreetly in one more easily than using a Muslim or other covering. I was once feeding ds in a busy restaurant and a lady asked me how i managed to get him to sleep with all the noise going on. He wasn't sleeping - he was eating his lunch too!
The more you do it, the more comfortable you become. If you're planning to bf you're going to have to feed in public at some point or you'll never leave the house! I used to feed my baby in the bathroom, which sucks but five months in I do it anywhere I just cover up. No one says anything, it's easier than you think!!
At this young age, if you pump and don't bf, you may get engorged and uncomfortable.
I don't drive so was on a lot of public transport when I was on maternity leave. I breast fed on the bus, on the tube, in shops etc. No one ever made any comments. I wore a bf bra and a bf vest from h and m which unclipped, so I just lifted my top and unclipped the vest and bra.
Congratulations on the baby.
My DD started crying when I was registering her. The registrar asked how I was feeding her and said I was welcome to feed there and then. So that was my first experience of breastfeeding when out and about. I hadn't thought it through though so my outfit wasn't very breastfeeding friendly lol. Definitely wear a vest top under your top then pull that down and your top up. Most people don't realise what you're doing.
I was so nervous before feeding in public, totally understand how you feel. 2 years on and I would whip em out anywhere.
When I started I wore a vest that I could pull down underneath a baggy top I could pull up so very minimal exposure.
Good luck and congratulations on feeding your baby, it will be second nature before you know it. I fed for 2 and a half years in the end and the only disapproval I ever got was from family.
If you can pump enough to feed him (I can't, and I've bf three kids) and he doesn't take the bottle you still may have to try and feed him. My advice is this: either wear a vest top and a normal top so you can pull the vest down with your bra and the other top up, or a proper bf top. Sorry if I'm talking like you're stupid, but when I first started bf in public I was worried about exposing myself, and my dc never like the muslin either.
If you have a mirror you can feed in front of, have a go, you'll be surprised how little boob others see. Also, a baby quietly feeding at his age people often think you're just cuddling him.
Long term if you want to feed in public, and I did I believe you need to get practise it. I took mum to a Costa and we sat and I fed dd there while she distracted me from feeling self conscious. This was six years ago now and it must have worked, because I've fed three dc in all manner of places.
Please go easy on yourself, I totally remember being really nervous for quite some time about this, the phrase fake it till you make it springs to mind, it will get easier and you will feel more comfortable, at least I did anyway. And you never know, in situations like this, especially if my dc were in a sling, they'd sometimes have a power nap and sleep the whole way there and back!
Wow, didn't meant to write an essay, hope I've helped at least a little.
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